The Daisy 35: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Daisy 35
Daisy 35 multi-pump pneumatic

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Sight-in
  • RWS Superdomes
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Hobby
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today I test the Daisy 35 multi-pump with a dot sight. Will that sight make the airgun any more accurate? That’s the test. I mounted the UTG Reflex Micro green dot sight.

The test

I shot from the same 10 meters, rested. I used 8 pumps per shot, just as before. I tried to use the same pellets but I couldn’t find the tin of Norma Golden Trophy pellets, so I substituted RWS Superdomes in their place. I have been told that these Norma pellets are equivalent to the RWS line.

I shot 10-shot groups, just as before. The only difference today, other than the pellet substitution was the sight. And I wore my regular glasses — not the reading glasses I wear when  I shoot with open sights.

Sight-in

It was difficult to sight-in the 35. Any airgun that makes 2-inch groups at 10 meters is going to be difficult to sight in. I started at 10 feet and had to adjust the dot down and to the left a lot. When I got two shots that went to the same place I backed up to 20 feet and kept sighting-in. After two shots were good at that distance I backed up to 10 meters and continued the sight-in. 

All things considered, it took about 12 shots to get the gun sighted-in. Then I shot the first group of RWS Superdomes.

RWS Superdomes

It was a fortunate thing that I shot Superdomes today because they gave me the best group of the test. Ten of them went into 1.963-inches at 10 meters. The group is fairly well centered on the bull. It’s just off to the left a little.

Daisy 35 Superdome group
Ten RWS Superdomes went into 1.963-inches at 10 meters. This is the best group of today’s test.

JSB Exact RS

The next pellet I tested was the JSB Exact RS dome. In Part 3 ten of these made a 2.591-inch group. Today with the dot sight ten went into 3.326-inches. Well — that’s no better, is it? Apparently I can shoot just as well with open sights as with a dot — at least this time!

Daisy 35 JSB RS group
Ten JSB RS domes made this 3.326-inch group at 10 meters. The first shot was in the black near the center, which is why I continued with the group without adjusting the sight. Shot two is that large round hole at the upper left. It looks like it was shot with a wadcutter but I saw it form as I shot. This is why a gun that shoots wide is so hard to sight in.

RWS Hobby

The last pellet I shot was the RWS Hobby wadcutter. In Part 3 ten Hobbys made a 2.205-inch group. Today using the dot sight the 35 put ten Hobbys into 2.29-inches at 10 meters. It’s pretty much the same as the last time with open sights.

One thing about this group. It is so spread out that there are two sight-in shots that look like they are in the group. Well, they aren’t. If you look at the edges of their hole you can tell that they were shot with Superdomes that didn’t cut round holes. This group is similar to the group Hobbys made when I shot with open sights.

Daisy 35 Hobby group
Ten RWS Hobbys made a 2.29-inch group at 10 meters. The arrows point to two holes made by Superdomes during the sight-in. They aren’t part of this group.

Discussion

The tightest group shot with open sights in Part 3 of this test measures 2.181-inches between centers. The tightest group of today’s testing measures 1.963-inches between centers. Clearly the Daisy 35 does not become more accurate at 10 meters with a dot sight.

This may look like a short little test, but please remember that each one of those 30 pellet holes was preceeded by 8 pump strokes. Add to that the 12 sight-in shots and I had to pump this airgun 336 times for today’s test. It wasn’t short on my end! But thankfully the Daisy 35 is an easy airgun to pump.

Looking at the groups I see that this Daisy 35 will hit a tin can most of the time out to 30 feet, or so. That’s its strength. It sure isn’t a paper puncher!

Summary

There is one last thing to test and that is the accuracy of the airgun with BBs. Given that it is set to feed BBs with the magnetic bolt tip I don’t see any reason to test it with lead BBs. You can try to talk me out of that, but think about it. Is someone shooting a $35-40 airgun really going to spend $25 for 1,500 BBs?


Crosman Vigilante CO2 Revolver: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Vigilante dot sight
Crosman Vigilante.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3 
Part 4

This report covers:

  • BB cylinder
  • The test
  • Crosman Black Widow
  • Air Venturi Smart Shot
  • The trigger
  • Marksman BBs
  • Beeman Perfect Rounds
  • Daisy Match Grade Avanti Precision shot
  • Get a good dot sight
  • Summary

Today we shoot the Crosman Vigilante CO2 Revolver with BBs. Some real surprizes are in store!

BB cylinder

To shoot BBs we have to use the BB cylinder that holds 6 BBs, instead of the ten pellets we have been used to. So the groups today will be 6 shots.

The BB cylinder is loaded outside the gun from the front. The rear of the cylinder is too small to accept a BB of any size.

Vigilante BB cylinder
The Vigilante’s BB cylinder is loaded from the front. Three plastic “fingers” apply tension to hold the BB in place. These are 6 Marksman BBs.

The test

I loaded a fresh CO2 cartridge for this test because I plan to shoot a lot. I shot at 5 meters seated with the revolver rested on the UTG Unipod. I shot 6-shot groups so I could test more BBs.

The Vigilante has the UTG Reflex Micro Dot sight mounted, because it did so well in the pellet accuracy test.

Crosman Black Widow

First up were Crosman Black Widow BBs because the Vigilante is a Crosman airgun, after all. And we have learned through testing that Black Widows are premium BBs that usually test among the best in any gun.

Six Black Widow went into a group that measures 0.923-inches between centers. I watched the group grow and I knew this test was going to turn out well.

Vigilante Black Widow group
Six Crosman Black Widows went into 0.923-inches at 5 meters when shot from the Crosman Vigilante.

After shooting this group I adjusted the dot both up and to the left. 

Air Venturi Smart Shot

Next up were six Smart Shot copper-plated lead BBs from Air Venturi. We know that these are on the large side for BBs, measuring about 0.173-0.1735-inches in diameter. And they are lead, so we are safer from rebounds than we would be from steel BBs.

Six Smart Shot went into 1.496-inches at 5 meters. Three of them went into the same hole that looks like two BBs instead of three.

Vigilante Smart Shot group
The Vigilante put 6 Smart Shot lead BBs in 1.496-inches at 5 meters.

The trigger

The Vigilante trigger breaks at 5.5 lbs. in the single-action mode. This is a bit too heavy for such a light revolver. Even though I was steadied by the monopod, the dot was dancing all around the bull, and sometimes it was outside.

Marksman BBs

The Marksman BB is a steel BB that we don’t know what to do with. They measure 0.176-inches in diameter, which is super-large for a steel BB. I tried them because the Vigilante has a rifled barrel for lead pellets, so it should be fine with these. And, it is! Six of them went into 0.841-inches at 5 meters. I was impressed!

Vigilante Marksman group
Six Marksman steel BBs went into a group measuring 0.841-inches between centers.

Beeman Perfect Rounds

The next “BB” I tested isn’t really a BB. It was supposed to be shot in rifled pellet guns and H&N made them for Beeman. Perfect Rounds measure 0.176-inches in diameter, like the steel Marksman BBs, but these can take the rifling of the barrel. The Vigilante put them into a group that measures 1.04-inches between centers at 5 meters.

Vigilante Perfect Round group
Six Beeman Perfect Rounds went into 1.04-inches between centers at 5 meters.

After the Perfect Rounds I adjusted the dot up another three or four clicks. The Perfect Rounds landed lower because of their weight, but the Marksman steel BBs had also landed low on the target.

Daisy Match Grade Avanti Precision shot

The last different BB I tried was the Daisy Match Grade Avanti Precision shot. The Vigilante is shooting so well that you guys would have been after me to try it if I hadn’t. And they were great! Six of them went into 0.907-inches at 5 meters.

Vigilante Avanti Match BBs group
The Vigilante put 6 Daisy Avanti Match Grade Precision BBs into this 0.907-inch group at 5 meters.

This revolver can really shoot — BBs. And that’s my recommendation. Buy the Vigilante for BBs and be pleased that it can also shoot pellets. But it’s perfect for BBs.

Get a good dot sight

And get a dot sight that works! This Reflex Micro Dot is expensive; I understand that. But ASG, Crosman (Centerpoint) and UTG all make less expensive reflex dot sights that should work as well. They may not be as small as the UTG Reflex, which is one of its chief selling points, but these don’t cost more than the Vigilante.

One more time

The Markman BBs were the best thus far, so I fired a second group of them. Now that the sight was adjusted they should go into the bull, or close. Six BBs went into 0.693-inches at 5 meters. It is the smallest group of the test!

Vigilante Marksman BBs group2
The last group of 6 Marksman BBs was the smallest of the test. Group size is 0.693-inches between centers.

Summary

I always wanted to shoot a Crosman 357, and with the Vigilante I feel I have done it. The revolver is red-hot with most BBs and okay with pellets. If a lookalike CO2 revolver is what you want, this is one I recommend.


Crosman Vigilante CO2 Revolver: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Vigilante dot sight
Crosman Vigilante with the UTG Micro dot sight mounted.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3 

This report covers:

  • What has changed?
  • The test
  • Sight-in
  • RWS Meisterkugeln Rifle
  • What does this prove?
  • Crosman Premier Light
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Norma S-Target Match
  • Is it me or the pellets?
  • Summary

Today I believe you will be surprised. I sure was! This is the second accuracy test of the Crosman Vigilante CO2 revolver.

What has changed?

Today I mounted the UTG Reflex Micro dot sight on the revolver, to see if a better sight would improve my accuracy. I tried the Sig Match Ballistic Alloy target pellet and I also introduce a new pellet that I will begin testing for you today, plus the two best pellets from the last test were chosen for today’s test. Those are the only things I did differently in today’s test.

The test

I shot 5-shot groups at 10 meters with my arms rested on a sandbag. I have to tell you, that dot sure jumps around when the revolver is held in the hands!

Sight-in

The dot sight was not on target to begin with, so I moved forward to 10 feet and started the sight-in. I shot 4 pellets before getting them where I wanted. Then I backed up to 10 meters and refined the sight picture with 4 more pellets. Now I was ready to shoot.

RWS Meisterkugeln Rifle

The first pellet to be tested and also used for the sight-in was the RWS Meisterkugeln Rifle wadcutter.  The Vigilante put five of them into a 0.684-inch group at 10 meters. I was astonished! In the last test using open sights I was able to put five of these same pellets into 1.828-inches at the same 10 meters, with everything else being exactly the same. 

Vigilante dot Meisterkugeln rifle group 1
The Crosman Vigilante revolver , with the UTG Reflex Micro dot sight mounted, five RWS Meisterkugeln Rifle pellets into a 0.684-inch group at 10 meters.

Take me home, mother, and put me to bed! I have seen enough to know that I have seen too much. That group, my friends, is a result! The Godfather of Airguns may say that sights don’t improve the accuracy of an airgun, but in this case — they do! That little green dot may have been wobbling around the bullseye as I watched it, but apparently the pellets all knew right where I wanted them to go. After this group I didn’t adjust the dot sight again for the remainder of the test.

What does this prove?

What this proves is this pistol can be just as accurate as its owners claim. I don’t doubt that goes for the Crosman 357 that preceded it, as well. It isn’t a precision target pistol, but for what little you pay, you get a whole lot of value!

Crosman Premier Light

The next pellet I tried was the Crosman Premier Light dome. Five of them went into 1.853-inches at 10 meters, with four of them in 0.867-inches. I didn’t call that lowest shot a pull, but it’s directly below the other four pellets and you have to remember that this revolver has a very heavy trigger pull.

Vigilante dot Premier Light group
The Vigilante put five Crosman Premier Light pellets into 1.853-inches at 10 meters. The upper four pellets are in 0.867-inches.

Sig Match Ballistic Alloy

Next to be tested was the Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellet. I just wanted to see what they could do, because in many airguns they are so accurate. The Vigilante put five of them into 1.982-inches at 10 meters. There is nothing in this group that gives me any hope that the Vigilante likes it, so this one is out.

Vigilante dot Sig Match Alloy group
Five Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets went into 1.982-inches at 10 meters.

Norma S-Target Match

The final pellet I tried is one you haven’t seen before — the S-Target Match from Norma. It’s an 8.2-grain wadcutter, which puts it into the target rifle pellet class — along with the Meisterkugeln Rifle. The Vigilante put five into a 1.892-inch group. I will be testing this new pellet more very soon, but from these results and the open group I can tell it isn’t the one for the Vigilante.

Vigilante dot Norma target group
The Vigilante put five Norma S-Target Match pellets into 1.892-inches at 10 meters.

Is it me or the pellets?

At this point in the test I was getting tired. Concentrating on the dot with that heavy trigger pull was making me very tired and I wondered if the last few larger groups were the pellets or me. So I shot another group of five Meisterkugeln Rifle pellets that had opened this test. This time the group was larger than the first time, at 1.309-inches between centers. Four of the five pellets are in 0.932-inches and they landed in the same place they did in the first group. This is the second-smallest 5-shot group of the test and it was shot at the end.

Vigilante dot-Meisterkugeln Rifle group 2
The second group of Meisterkugeln Rifle pellets measures 1.309-inches between centers, with 4 in 0.932-inches. The second smallest group of today’s test.

I think the Meisterkugeln Rifle pellet is a good one for the Vigilante and I also think I was partly responsible for the openness of the last few groups. The bottom line is — the Vigilante can shoot!

Summary

In my experience this is one of the very rare times that a different sight has significantly improved the accuracy of a pellet gun. I will still say that different sights don’t usually matter that much, but clearly they can, and sometimes they do.

Next I will test the Vigilante with BBs, and I think I will leave the dot sight installed.


Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

M1A
Springfield Armory M1A.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Artillery hold
  • Shimmed scope
  • The cheek rest works
  • What about a dot sight?
  • It worked!
  • Hobbys
  • Sight adjustment
  • Air Arms Diabolo Field Heavy pellets
  • Air Arms Field pellets
  • JSB Exact RS
  • The result?
  • The safety linkage
  • Final comments
  • Summary

Today we shoot the scoped Springfield Armory M1A and see how it does. If you read Part 5 you know that it wasn’t easy to scope this air rifle. I won’t go into all of that here, but read Part 5 for a refresher.

The test

I suspected the M1A would be accurate, well, actually I knew it is because of the test I did in Part 4 with the sights that came on it. But I conducted this test from 10 meters. I held the groups to 5 shots because of all the steps involved in cocking and loading the rifle. I’m not just talking about cocking with the underlever and then pushing down on the anti-beartrap mechanism to return the cocking lever. There was also the intermittent safety setting itself after the rifle fired, making it impossible to cock and load again, until the safety was pulled back off. And I had to watch the base screws that wanted to loosen as I went.

I had thought that getting to the anti-beartrap disconnect on the left, to push it down after the rifle was cocked would present a problem with the scope in the way, but the scope is mounted high enough that my hand can get under and hit the button. So no problem there.

Artillery hold

I shot with the artillery hold. My off hand started out next to the trigger guard, but eventually moved forward to the cocking slot, where the rifle seemed most accurate.

Shimmed scope

As you recall, I shimmed the scope before mounting it. Well, good thing I did because when I went to sight in the pellet struck the paper 4 inches too low and three inches to the right — at 12 feet! I adjusted the scope up a lot and also to the left which is good because adjusting to the left puts tension back into the erector tube spring that relaxed as the scope was adjusted up.

I checked the scope rings to be sure they were attached to the scope base correctly and they were. I checked the mounting of the scope base and it was also correct. I then adjusted the reticle as far up as it would go without relaxing the erector return spring. With this scope I can feel when that happens.

I was shooting .22-caliber RWS Hobby pellets as I adjusted the scope. Even with all the upward adjustment I had to hold 4 dots down on the vertical reticle to get onto the bull. But the scope I used is very clear, so that presented no problem. I would recommend using an adjustable scope mount if you’re going to scope the M1A because the shimming I did doesn’t come close to elevating the point of impact enough.

Once the Hobbys were hitting the target, I shot a group. Five Hobbys went into a vertical group measuring 0.72-inches at ten meters. I didn’t bother photographing that group for reasons that I hope will be clear in a moment.

Okay, Hobbys weren’t doing that well. What about the Air Arms Diabolo Field Heavy pellets that weigh 18 grains? Well, they hit the paper even lower and more to the right. In fact, several didn’t even hit the target trap at all, so I stopped the test. This was too hard. All the rigamarole I went through to mount the scope in Part 5 and now I learn that it doesn’t work!

The cheek rest works

The scope may not work but the leather cheek rest I attached sure does. I placed my chin on top of the pad and my eye was aligned with the scope. The other cheek rest that a reader suggested hasn’t arrived yet, but this one works fine.

But the scope I had mounted was too much trouble. I just didn’t trust it because I was missing the pellet trap at 10 meters!

What about a dot sight?

Someone suggested trying a dot sight on the M1A and I really didn’t want to give up at this point, so the scope came off and I tried mounting a UTG reflex micro red dot (though the one I have is a green dot). But I ran into a problem. The cross slots in the Air Venturi scope mount measure exactly 5mm wide, which is the specification for a Picatinny rail, but the UTG sight has a cross block that measures 5.08mm wide. It’s too wide to fit the base of the Air Venturi mount! I have had people tell me recently that a thousandth of an inch, or in this case a hundredth of a millimeter that is much smaller, makes no difference, but I’m telling you that 8 of them sitting next to each other sure do!

So I used a vintage Tasco ProPoint dot sight whose rings use the cross screw that tightens the jaws at the base as their mount block. They are  much narrower than 5mm. These rings are made to fit either Weaver bases whose cross slots are 3.5mm wide or the wider Picatinny bases.

These rings are also much lower than the ones I used for the scope, which means the ProPoint sat much lower on the M1A scope base. Even so, I could still reach the anti-beartrap button on the left side of the receiver with ease. I now reached over the red dot tube, instead of under the scope.

It worked!

And this time it worked. The sight was affixed solid on the mount and I kept an eye on the mount screws to ensure they were tight, too. The first test was five Hobbys.

Hobbys

Just as they did with the scope, RWS Hobbys landed in a vertical group that measured 0.603-inches between centers. There is a nice three-shot cloverleaf at the bottom of this group. This group is slightly smaller than the group I shot with the scope, so at 10 meters we don’t seem to be giving up anything by using a dot sight.

M1A Hobby group
With the dot sight the M1A put 5 RWS Hobbys into this vertical 0.603-inch group at 10 meters.

Sight adjustment

At this point I didn’t know where the M1A might shoot the remaining pellets, but I adjusted the dot several clicks to the left. Through blind luck I got it almost perfect.

Air Arms Diabolo Field Heavy pellets

Next up were some Air Arms Diabolo Field Heavy pellets. The M1A put five of them into 0.618-inches at 10 meters. They landed below the bullseye I was aiming at, but in line with its center, left to right.

M1A Air Arms Field Heavy
The M1A put five Air Arms Heavy domes into this 0.618-inch group at 10 meters.

I decided to leave the sight where it was adjusted because I didn’t know where the other pellets would hit. It’s still too low, but I won’t worry about that yet.

Air Arms Field pellets

Next up were five 16-grain Air Arms Field pellets. These landed in a group that measures 0.332-inches between centers. It shows the level of accuracy I was hoping to see in today’s test.

M1A Air Arms Field
Five Air Arms 16-grain domes went into this 0.332-inch group at 10 meters. It may appear smaller because the dome allows the target paper to fold back after it passes through. This is the smallest group of the test.

JSB Exact RS

The last pellet I tested was the JSB Exact RS dome. Five of them made a 0.38-inch group at 10 meters.

M1A JSB RS
Five JSB Exact RS pellets grouped in 0.38-inches at 10 meters. It’s only a little larger than the Air Arms 16-grainers!

The result?

Today’s little test demonstrates that the M1A pellet rifle has good potential for accuracy. However, I don’t think it is a gun to scope. Shoot it like it comes and enjoy the gun the way it was designed.

The safety linkage

I promised reader Siraniko I would show the safety linkage. Well, you aren’t going to see very much! The safety lever reaches deep into the trigger mechanism and we are unable to see how it interacts to do its job when the trigger is together. And no, I am not taking this trigger apart!

M1A safety
The safety lever (to the left of the trigger) goes deep into the trigger assembly. The two thin pads on either side of it are just guides — they are not connected to the safety.

M1A safety front
Here we are at the front of the safety, looking deep inside. You can see the pin that the safety rotates on at the top of the trigger assembly. Without disassembly there’s nothing to be see with this safety.

Final comments

Taking the stock off exposed the two gears that move the forearm and loading port cover when the rifle is cocked. That was neat to see.

M1A gears
These gears move the upper hand guard and the loading port cover when the rifle is cocked.

The stock screws in the forearm both had blue Locktite on them from the factory. That tells me somebody cared about how this air rifle was built!

M1A screws
The forearm screws are Locktited.

Summary

The Springfield Armory M1A pellet rifle is well-made and is a very accurate replica pellet gun. I recommend not trying to mount a scope. Just use the peep sights the rifle comes with.

It has decent power and accuracy. It also doesn’t seem to be fussy about what pellets you shoot. That means all those oddball pellets in your collection can now be used.

Loading is difficult because of the small space provided. If you have large hands you will want to think about that.

This is a large airgun and not the type for all-day plinking. But if you fancy military battle rifles, this one could be for you!


SigAir ProForce MCX Virtus AEG airsoft gun: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Virtus AGE right
SigAir ProForce MCX Virtus AEG right side.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Sig Romeo5 XDR red dot sight
Part 4
Part 5

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Sig 0.20-gram BBs
  • Discharge sound
  • TSD Tactical black
  • TSD Tactical white
  • Summary

Today is the final test of the Sig ProForce MCX Virtus airsoft gun. So far we have tested the velocity and accuracy of 0.20-gram and heavier BBs with the 120 mainspring the gun came with. Then we swapped in the 110 mainspring that was also included and tested the gun all over again.

Today we test the accuracy of the gun with the 110 spring and 0.20-gram BBs. Let’s get right to it.

The test

I shot outdoors at 10 meters. The gun was rested on a sandbag. The Romeo5 XDR dot sight is still zeroed from Part 4.

Sig 0.20-gram BBs

I started the test with the 0.20-gram BBs Sig sent with the gun. They don’t have a BB of their own, and I don’t know whose BBs these are. Ten went into 2.151-inches at 10 meters. The group is centered on the bullseye very well, but it is a little high. So I adjusted the dot sight down several clicks before shooting the next BB.

Virtus group Sig BBs
Ten Sig 0.20-gram BBs went into 2.151-inches at 10 meters. The group is high, so the sight setting was lowered.

Discharge sound

Now that I have a sound meter I tested the discharged noise of the gun. I put my phone 4 feet to the left of the muzzle and pointed the microphone at the muzzle. I write that as a note to myself for standardizing future sound testing. A shot registered 89.1 on the meter. The only comparison I can offer is the .22 CB cap I recorded last week. The phone was farther away for that test and not pointed at the muzzle, and the discharge registered 88.2 decibels. No doubt it would have been a lot louder if tested under the same conditions as the Virtus.

sound meter
The Virtus registered 89.1 decibels Number on the lower right) on the sound meter.

TSD Tactical black

Next I fired 10 TSD Tactical black 0.20-gram BBs. They grouped in 2.565-inches at 10 meters. They are lower on the target and centered very well but still a little high. After this group was completed I adjusted the Romeo5 down 3 more clicks.

Ten TSD black 0.20-gram BBs went into 2.151-inches at 10 meters. The group is well-centered but still a little high, so the sight was adjusted lower again.

TSD Tactical group black BBs
Ten black TSD Tactical BBs were more centered on the target but were not as tight as the Sig BBs.

TSD Tactical white

Next up were TSD white tactical BBs. By this time in the test the sun was behind me and I could see each BB flying toward the target. They seemed to fly in an arc that peaked 3 to 5 inches above the bullseye. But when I collected the target I saw that the BBs had struck in the black or just above. One shot was off the target paper on the high side and the group measures 2.004-inches between centers at 10 meters. It’s the smallest group of the test.

TSD Tactical group white BBs
One BB hit 1/2-inch above the target paper, making this a 2.004-inch group of 10 at ten meters.

Summary

Well that is the complete test of the Sig ProForce MCX Virtus airsoft gun. Based on what we have seen the heavier BBs (0.28-gram and 0.30-gram) are the most accurate, but the 0.20-BBs are not bad, either. Maybe if I had adjusted the Hop-Up for each BB we would have seen something even better. The gun handles the 120 spring readily, though I like the 110 spring for the lower strain it puts on the gearbox. The trigger is great and there were no problems with feeding, once I learned how the magazine operated.

This is a serious gamer’s close quarter battle gun. It’s rugged, reliable, accurate and works exactly as it should. The battery has lasted for all testing on just a single charge.

The Romeo5 XDR dot sight was a real treat to use! It adjusts precisely and I like that 50,000-hour battery life for the ONE AAA battery this sight uses! I will be sad to see this one go home.


Ataman AP16 Standard air pistol: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Ataman AP16 Standard
Ataman AP16 PCP repeater.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

Adjustable sights
It doesn’t matter
The test
Sight in
Mount a dot sight
JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy
Air Arms 16-grain dome
Air Arms Falcon pellets
JSB Hades
Loud!
Conclusions
Summary

Today is accuracy day for the Ataman AP16 Standard precharged air pistol. We learned in Part 2 that the AP16 Standard gets up to 46 good shots from one fill. I didn’t shoot that many in the tests today so I only filled the pistol once.

Adjustable sights

We know that the rear sight slides left and right in a dovetail and is held fast by a setscrew.  That’s easy to figure out. It’s the front sight that you need help with. There are no instructions in the manual and the front sight controls elevation by raising and lowering the blade. I told you in Part 2 I would tell you how to adjust it so let’s see.

To raise the impact of the pellet the front sight blade needs to go lower. It needs to go in a direction opposite how you want the pellet to move. There is a screw in front of the sight blade and another at the rear. The blade is pivoting on a crosspin and seems to have a coiled spring under the front. It seems if you screw the front screw down and loosen the rear one, the blade will drop lower. But don’t take my word for it. Play with the screws and watch the front blade. I say that because adjusting this sight is very confusing.

Ataman AP16 Standard sight down
The front sight blade is adjusted low.

Ataman AP16 Standard sight up
The front sight blade is adjusted up.

It doesn’t matter

It makes no difference how the open sights adjust because nobody will use them. You guys know that I can shoot an air pistol with open sights — but not this one! The rear notch is too wide and I can’t center the front blade in it effectively. Let me show you what I mean.

The test

I shot from 10 meters with the pistol resting directly on a sandbag. Since the circular clip holds 7 pellets, each group is 7 shots.

Sight in

I checked the pistol’s sights with the JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy that Tyler Patner said are the most accurate pellets. One shot at 12 feet told me I was on paper after fooling around with the sights for photos. Then back to 10 meters for the final 6 rounds.

Ataman AP16 Standard sight-in
The first shot from 12 feet is above the dime. The next 6 shots are from 10 meters. As you can see, I can’t shoot these open sights.

Mount a dot sight

After seeing my group I decided to mount a dot sight. Fortunately the UTG Reflex Micro was available, so I removed the open sights and mounted it. That took 20 minutes, then another 10 to sight-in with that sight and then the test could begin. 

JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy

First up were JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy pellets. Seven went into 0.529-inches at 10 meters. The group was a little high and left, so I adjusted three clicks down and three to the right afterward.

Ataman AP16 Standard Jumbo Heavy
Seven JSB Jumbo Heavy pellets went into 0.529-inches at 10 meters.

Air Arms 16-grain domes

Next to be tested were 7 Air Arms 16-grain domes. They hit the center of the bull, so my adjustment of the dot sight was spot on! Seven went into 0.293-inches at 10 meters.  It’s a good-looking group! In fact, it’s the best group of the test.

Ataman AP16 Standard Air Arms domes
Look at this little bitty group. It’s right where it’s supposed to be. Seven Air Arms domes in 0.293-inches at 10 meters.

Air Arms Falcon pellets

Next I tried 7 Air Arms Falcon domes in the AP16. Once again they went to the center of the bull and clustered in 0.508-inches at 10 meters

Ataman AP16 Standard Falcons
Seven Falcon pellets went into 0.508-inches at 10 meters.

JSB Hades

The last pellet I tested in the AP16 was the Hades hollowpoint from JSB. Seven of them went into 0.526-inches at 10 meters.

Loud!

This pistol is very loud! Later on this week I hope to have a solution for that. And no, it isn’t a silencer — exactly.

Conclusions

The AP16 is extremely accurate. Mount a good dot sight and experience it! Don’t even try the open sights. I think they are a lost cause. 

Summary

The Ataman AP16 stacks up to be a fine hunting air pistol. It gets a lot of shots on a fill and puts pellets exactly where they are wanted. If you are looking for a powerful hunting air pistol, this could be the one.


Umarex Air Javelin airbow: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Umarex Air JavelinThe Air Javelin from Umarex.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • More to test
  • What are the holes for?
  • Remove the old 88-gram cartridge
  • Lots of gas!
  • Install the adaptor
  • Cock the gun!
  • Don’t do as BB does!
  • Adjust the dot sight up
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today I shoot the Umarex Air Javelin with a dot sight optic. My UTG Reflex Micro  Dot was mounted elsewhere so I mounted a Tasco Pro Point red dot sight. 

Air Javelin dot sight
The Air Javelin accepted the Tasco Pro Point without a problem.

More to test

I didn’t tell you this but I asked Umarex to send me a 12-gram CO2 adapter so I could test the AJ with 12-gram cartridges. Some readers had asked about that possibility and since Pyramyd Air doesn’t carry the adapter, I went straight to Umarex.

Air Javelin 12-gram adapter
Several Umarex airguns including the Air Javelin use this adapter that switches the power source from 88/90-gram CO2 cartridges to 12-gram cartridges.

Let’s look at how it works. One end has an end cap that unscrews to accept the two 12-gram cartridges. The other end is treaded to screw into whatever airgun you install it on.

Air Javelin adapter description
The adapter has an end cap (arrow) that comes off to insert the CO2 cartridges, and threads on the other end to screw into the airgun. The holes are for moving the end cap when pressure holds it tight.

The two cartridges go into the adapter nose to nose. The piercing end of the first cartridge goes in first and the piercing end (small flat end) of the second cartridge is left up at the top, where the pin in the cap can pierce it. There is a spring-loaded winding tab on the cap. The spring holds the tab flat against the cap until you need it.

Air Javelin adapter cap off
The adapter cap has been unscrewed.

No directions for use came with the adaptor but it is pretty easy to figure out. I unscrewed the end cap piercing screw as far as it would go before dropping two cartridges inside. And I dropped in 5 drops of Crosman Pellgunoil before inserting the first cartridge. Then I put more Pellgunoil on the tip of the second cartridge.

Air Javelin cap screw
Here you see the cap screw (bottom) unscrewed as far as it will go.

What are the holes for?

If you ask what the holes in the sides of the end cap are for you haven’t yet encountered a gas gun with so much pressure that it wouldn’t let go of the end cap. This used to be a real problem in the 1950s and ’60s when improper o-ring material would swell from the gas and no let go of the end cap for hours after the gun was empty. With modern materials there is no more problem, unless the gas pressure inside the adapter is still high. This is not a large problem; it’s more of a convenience.

As you can see, I unscrew the piercing screw on the end cap as far as it will go, then screw the end cap down as far as it will go. Now I pick up the spring-loaded tab and start screwing the piercing screw in. That one screw is piercing both cartridges. It pushes the bottom cartridge down on the internal piercing pin inside the adapter as well as screwing in the piercing pin in the end cap. So I run it in as far as it will go. I heard no gas escape when I did this, but just to make certain the piercing pins were out of the way of the gas, I unscrewed the tab about a turn.

Remove the old 88-gram cartridge

Before the adaptor could be installed I first had to remove the previous 88-gram CO2 cartridge that was in the AJ. I didn’t know for sure but I calculated there were around 20 shots on it. We learned in Part 1 that the AJ has up to 30 good shots on one 88-gram cartridge. The last shots will send arrows out at just under 200 f.p.s. while the first shots have them going over 300 f.p.s. I will have more to tell you and show you later in this report, but for now you need to know that I was removing a cartridge that had a good 10 shots remaining inside. I had to do it to get a shot count from the two 12-gram CO2 cartridges in the adapter I’m about to install.

Lots of gas!

I will say this. Once you slowly unscrew the CO2 cartridge it comes to a point when the remaining gas is no longer sealed and starts hissing out. That lasted a long time — several minutes at least. I also dry-fired the AJ about 10 times as it was loosing gas to speed up the process. In the end the last gas hissed out and the old cartridge could be removed. The gun was now ready for the adapter.

Install the adaptor

The adaptor just screws into the gun where the CO2 tank was. Remember I put Pellgunoil inside when the cartridges were pierced, so that gets blown into the AJ to get on all the internal seals. BUT…!

Cock the gun!

Umarex tells you not to cock the gun when installing a new cartridge and I expect they also mean this adaptor. That is obviously a safety issue. But the adaptor holds two 12-gram cartridges that have limited gas. So I screwed the adaptor in, and when the hissing began I cocked the AJ and stopped it instantly.

Air Javelin adapter in
The adaptor fits in the AJ just like an 88-gram CO2 cartridge. This photo was very important later in the test!

Don’t do as BB does!

This is an object lesson. Some of you think I am modest, but the truth is — I am often that bad example your mother warned you not to follow! I set up the target bag in my back yard about 10 meters from the shooting bench. Yes that’s pretty far but I hadn’t shot the AJ in two months and my last recollection was one of great accuracy. It really was accurate last time — what could go wrong? I held the red dot in the center of the target that was taped to the bag and fired the first arrow. But I couldn’t tell where it went. It wasn’t anywhere on the bag! Oh, oh!

I looked in the grass all around and under the bag for signs of the arrow and then in the wooden fence between my property and my neighbors. Nothing. So I dragged the bag back to 5 meters and shot again. This is where I should have placed the bag to begin with.

Adjust the dot sight up

This time the arrow hit the bag, just below the bottom of the target paper. My previous shot had been taken at twice the distance, so the lost arrow is definitely somewhere in my lawn at something less than 10 meters. I searched for another 10 minutes for that first arrow with no luck. Umarex had only sent me three arrows with the AJ, and now I was down to just two. I adjusted the elevation up considerably and shot again.

Shot three hit a half-inch or less from shot two. It was on the bag but still below the target paper. From the looks of it (it was on an angle in the bag), it may well have hit the back of the second arrow— something I would discover in a little bit. Now I knew I was on the target so I cranked in a whole lot more elevation and moved the bag out to 15 meters.

Then I let fly with shot number four. This time the arrow hit the bottom of the 6-ring, almost touching the bullseye at 6 o’clock. Wow! I pulled the arrow out and moved the target bag out to 20 meters.

That shot had looked so good that I fired my second shot (number five on the CO2 adaptor). It hit the target about 3/4-inches below the last one. I needed to watch out or I would Robin Hood my two remaining arrows.

The last test in Part 3 demonstrated that the AJ is very accurate at this distance, so I felt confident it would not be a problem. However — remember that arrow that may have been hit in the back? I knew that I would nail the target in line with the center of the target and with luck I’d be inside the bull. No such luck! This time I heard a sickening sound of the arrow hitting the fence behind the bag. I have never missed the bag before this shot and was surprised I missed it this time. I found the arrow that had gone 4 feet wide to the left and was halfway through the fence.

When I pulled that arrow out of the fence I examined it to see why it had gone so wide. Right away I saw it. The end of the arrow is blown out on one side. I think I did hit the back of this arrow earlier and now I was rewarded with a wild shot. When I enlarged the pictures of all three arrows that was taken before the test started I saw that none were damaged this way. That is what I meant by that earlier picture being so fortuitous.

Air Javelin arrow end
The end of the AJ arrow that went so wide at 20 yards was broken out on one side — causing the arrow to veer to the side as it came off the end of the air tube. This arrow was probably hit in the rear on shot number three.

Air Javelin arrows
I enhanced this earlier photo to show there was no damage to any of the three arrows at the start of this test.

For safety’s sake I moved the target bag back to 15 meters and fired my one remaining arrow three more times — shots 7, 8 and 9. Shot 7 hit the target at the bottom center of the largest ring in the white. I had to pull the arrow to shoot shot 8 and it hit the target about 3/4-inches below and to the right of shot 7. On this shot I noticed a lot of time between the shot and the arrow hitting the bag.

Air Javelin arrows shot 8
Shot 8 at 15 meters hit below and to the right of shot 7. I could hear that this arrow was slower.

I pulled the arrow and fired one more time. This time there was a definite slowing of the arrow and it hit at the bottom of the paper, a little more than an inch below shot 8.

Air Javelin arrows shot 9
Shot 9 hit the target a little more than an inch below shot 8.

Discussion

Based on this test I can say that two 12-gram CO2 cartridges give you about 8 good shots. They are not all the same speed, but I believe they all fall within the velocity spread of the 30 good shots you get from an 88-gram cartridge. Analyzing the costs tells me you get 8 good shots for about $1.00 with two 12-gram cartridges, and 30 good shots for about $8.00 with one 88-gram cartridge. The advantage of the adapter is shots that cost less. The advantage of the 88-gram cartridge is a lot more shots per cartridge. The velocity of the shots is the same because CO2 varies its pressure due to temperature. Volume is not a factor in pressure.There is no easy way to increase or decrease that pressure — certainly not one that’s available to the field.

The second thing I would tell you is to always examine your arrows just before loading them. I didn’t and only through a fortunate photograph was I able to determine that an arrow had been damaged during this test. A damaged arrow flies erratically and is too risky to shoot.

One last comment is that I need to jack up the rear of the dot sight for the next test. I had to apply too much elevation to get the arrows near to the aim point.

Summary

I’m still very impressed by the Air Javelin. Even with the challenges of today’s test, which in retrospect were all mine, the AJ held its own. When it is given half a chance it places its arrows close together at the distances I have been testing.

The CO2 adapter performs as well as many expected. I was surprised by the number of good shots we got in today’s test. And it is very easy to set up and use.

Hopefully we will see the AJ at least once more, and this time with more arrows and no sighting problems.